INTERNATIONAL AERO Engines (IAE) is working with Ilyushin to offer Il-86 operators its V2500 turbofan as an alternative to the CFM International (CFMI) CFM56 for re-engineing the aircraft. IAE says that an installation study will be completed by mid-year, around the time that CFMI is to decide whether to proceed with the CFM56 re-engineing programme.

IAE's director for new applications, Ray Siwinski, says that installation of the 133kN (30,000lb) V2500-I5, a variant of the -A5 engine used on the Airbus A320/A321, would be similar to that for the Pratt & Whitney PW2037 being certificated on the Il-96. P&W is an IAE partner company. The V2500-I5 is also being considered for a stretched Il-76 freighter.

The General Electric/Snecma CFMI joint venture has been working with Ilyushin for two years on re-engineing the Il-86 with 150kN CFM56-5C2s, the engines used on the Airbus A340. GE says that Ilyushin has accepted CFMI's conditions to proceed with the programme and now CFMI is reviewing conditions put forward by the Russian design bureau. A decision on whether to go ahead will be taken in June, the US engine maker says.

IAE's Siwinski says that Ilyushin's intention is to offer Il-86 operators an engine choice. About 100 aircraft are considered to be re-engineing candidates. Replacing the Il-86's Kuznetsov NK-86s would increase range, improve reliability and reduce noise. Five Russian airlines have declared their intent to re-engine a total of 25 aircraft (Flight International, 22-28 February, P11).

Separately, Rolls-Royce sources are pouring cold water on a claim by Ilyushin general designer Genrikh Novozhilov that "...the Englishmen are chasing us", with a proposal to replace Pratt & Whitney on the Il-96M/T.

Novozhilov is using the threat of switching to R-R as part of his campaign, to secure US Export Import Bank finance for Aeroflot Russian International Airlines' purchase of P&W-powered Il-96s. R-R says, officially that "our door is always open".

Source: Flight International